Hyderabad Police ‘Bans’ Beggars Ahead of Ivanka Trump’s Visit?

A similar order was in place when former US President Bill Clinton visited the city in 2000.

2 min read
Ivanka Trump (Photo: AP)

Stereotypes about India are rampant in the West, and this has only been reinforced ever since Academy-award winning film Slumdog Millionaire hit the screens. For many Americans, the country is only populated by beggars in slums.

Interestingly, ‘begging’ on the streets is a ‘crime’ now in Hyderabad, according to a notification issued by Commissioner of Police M Mahendar Reddy. The ban has been put in place for two months.

Although the order only cites inconvenience as a reason and does not say why the ban is in place, it is precisely in the period when Ivanka Trump, US President Donald Trump’s daughter, will be in the city.

Ivanka will lead the US delegation at the Global Entrepreneurship Summit (GES), which will be held in Hyderabad.

The Global Entrepreneurship Summit is a platform that connects global entrepreneurs with the access and exchange needed to create and innovate. The high-profile event will see several prominent personalities in attendance, including Prime Minister Narendra Modi himself. The event will take place from 28 to 30 November.

This isn’t the first time that such an order is being issued, as a similar drive was undertaken to make Hyderabad 'beggar-free' in 2000, when former US President Bill Clinton visited the city. According to Business Line, local police then relocated hundreds of beggars.

In an order issued on Tuesday, Hyderabad City Commissioner Reddy said, "It has come to my notice through the public that many beggars are begging for alms in an indecent manner. They are also employing children and handicapped persons to solicit or receive alms at the main junctions of the road."

"Such acts are causing annoyance and awkwardness by exposing in an indecent manner to divert the attention of the vehicular traffic as well as pedestrians and public in general to induce them to give alms. These acts are dangerous to the safety of the vehicular traffic and public in general," the notice added.

The orders, in place from 6 am on Tuesday to 6 am on 7 January 2018, makes begging liable to prosecution under Section 188 of the IPC (for disobedience of an order duly promulgated by a public servant), which could land you in prison.

The notice also said that persons violating the order would also be booked under the TS preventions of Begging Act, 1977 and the Juvenile Justice Act, 2000.

(The story was originally published on The News Minute)

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